ABC-Univision Hopes to 'Fuse' With U.S. Hispanics

ABC and Univision hope to fuse with English-speaking Hispanics on its forthcoming 24-hour news and entertainment channel, aptly called Fusion, the companies announced Monday.

The channel is aimed at a young and fast-growing cohort balancing ties between a foreign heritage and an American identity. About 40 percent of Hispanics in the U.S. were born elsewhere, and the demographic's median age is 28.

(Related Next America Story: Networks Vie for Pieces of $1 Trillion Hispanic Market)

"Our goal is for this young, vibrant, and media-hungry audience to come to Fusion to be informed, entertained, and empowered. It will be fresh, fun, and optimistic and of great interest to Latinos and non-Latinos alike," Ben Sherwood, president of ABC News, said in the press release.

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Fusion, based in Miami and expected to launch no earlier than midsummer, faces stiff competition from other networks as much as from the digital space.

MundoFox, a cable network that debuted in August, is primarily for Spanish-speakers, but it does some content in English and aims at the valued 18-34 demographic. NBC Universal, now owned by Comcast, has invested deeply in Telemundo, which is billed as a bilingual channel and reported 30 percent more election-night viewers in 2012 than 2008.

While advertisers are attracted to the size and age of the market, Hispanics earn about 30 percent less than others in the U.S.: The median U.S. Hispanic household income is $37,800, compared with the U.S. median of $52,800.

The New York Times also cites Telemundo numbers that indicate Latinos are more likely to watch videos on the Internet than on TV, at 68 percent.

(Related Atlantic Story: Fear of a Cord-Never Generation)